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Malawi Inaugurates $300m Magwero Industrial Park Project

PRESIDENT Lazarus Chakwera, alongside Benedict Okey Oramah, President and Chairman of the Board of Directors of Afreximbank, and Gagan Gupta, President-Founder of ARISE Integrated Industrial Platforms (ARISE IIP), has inaugurated the Magwero Industrial Park near Malawi’s capital, Lilongwe.

The Magwero Industrial Park, located 10 km from Lilongwe and close to Kamuzu International Airport and the Malawian railway network, is part of a framework contract signed on June 19, 2023, between Malawi and ARISE IIP. The Malawi Export Development Fund represents the government in this public-private partnership, with Afreximbank providing $300 million in financing.


The industrial park, spanning 417 hectares, aims to expedite Malawi’s industrialisation through economic diversification and the valorisation of natural resources. The park will host industrial units in various sectors, including:

  • Local processing of agricultural products such as soybeans, cotton, tomatoes, maize, peanuts, and retail food products.
  • Manufacturing units for glass, construction materials, lighting products (such as LED accessories), plywood, and paper production.

The park will also feature logistics warehouses, a residential area, an Internal Container Depot Terminal (ICDT), and ‘Plug and Play’ infrastructure with ready-to-use hangars for small and medium-sized enterprises.

President Chakwera emphasised the significance of the project: ‘In fostering economic development through industrialization, we have officially commenced construction of the first special economic zone in Malawi with assistance from Afreximbank and ARISE Integrated Industrial Platforms.’ He highlighted the state-of-the-art infrastructure that will support a wide range of functions across multi-industry value chains in manufacturing, packaging, research and innovation, logistics and storage, and dry port services before export.

Oramah underscored the project’s economic potential, saying: ‘We expect the Magwero Industrial Park to generate at least 15,000 jobs for Malawians, $600 million in annual export revenues, and about $600 million in foreign direct investment flows. This will significantly boost the economy of Malawi and improve the quality of life of its citizens while also positioning the country as an active and dominant player in the emerging single Continental market.’ He added, ‘Strong political will and leadership backed by African capital and innovation represent a powerful force that will drive positive economic transformation.’

Gupta expressed pride in the partnership with the Malawian government: ‘The Magwero Industrial Park is more than just an economic zone; it is a particularly impactful project for Malawi and aims to catalyse investments and local job creation. This enduring partnership with the Republic of Malawi aims to catalyse industrialisation in the country by creating industrial value chains supported by international investors.’

The Magwero Industrial Park is expected to significantly contribute to the development and diversification of Malawi’s economy. By creating job opportunities, attracting foreign investment, and boosting export revenues, the project aims to enhance the quality of life for Malawians and strengthen the country’s position in the global market.

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